One of the greatest strengths handmade jewelry makers have in a competitive market is the ability to create one-of-a-kind pieces. The trick to executing handmade jewelry, and making money doing so, requires the ability to do it quickly in a production like fashion.
With this technique, a splash of PearlEx Powder over curing colorized resin provides that one-of-a-kind look to your jewelry offerings. When your customers shop your booth at a show, at retail store locations, or on your website, they know they are purchasing a unique item.
This is first tutorial of 6 tutorials that is featured in this series. The techniques in this series feature Earring Post Bars in Large and Small as well as our Hammered Bitsy Rings.
This tutorial features Nunn Design Bar Earrings Small and Large. They are 20-gauge solid brass. The Small Bar is 3mm wide and 19mm in length and the Large Bar is 3mm wide and 38mm in length. A surgical steel post is soldered onto the back with lead-free solder. A sleeve is applied over the surgical steel post and then plated using nickel-free 24k gold and .999 fine silver. A final phase of oxidization is applied to provide an aged look to the plating. This product is made in the USA.
Here is the tutorial walking you through how to create this look using the bar earrings!
Nunn Design Supplies Needed:
- Nunn Design Earring Post Bar Large and Small
- Nunn Design 2-Part Resin Kit
- Castin’ Crafts Opaque Pigments
- Jacquard Pearl Ex Powdered Pigments
- Stir Sticks
- Mixing Cups
- Business Cards or glossy card stock
- Rubbing Alcohol
- Plastic Bags
- Needle Nose Pliers
The Nunn Design Findings are oxidized to provide the aged look to the precious metal plating. The oxidization, when it comes into contact with the resin, could change the color of the resin. To avoid this, clean the findings thoroughly prior to application of the resin. Get the tip of a Q-Tip wet with rubbing alcohol and clean away any of the blackened oxidization.
Create a flat surface where the posts of the earrings can poke through and be level. I used a piece of foam packaging to create this surface.
Read the resin instructions for safety concerns regarding the Nunn Design Resin.
When I work with resin, I always:
- Place a large plastic bag over my work surface and tape it down.
- I make sure I have ventilation in my workroom.
- I wear gloves.
- I wear glasses (readers because I can’t see anymore. Plus it protects my eyes!).
- I have a pile of wet wipes handy.
- This is a great blog post that covers 20 Habits for Successfully Using Nunn Design 2-Part Epoxy Resin. Even if you are a seasoned resin mixer, this might be worth a read.
You can also watch this great video on How to Mix Nunn Design Resin!
Place one cup (included in the Nunn Design Resin Kit) onto your table.
For curing purposes, it is very important that the resin be an exact 1 to 1 ratio of Part A and Part B. I suggest getting your eyes level with the resin so you can see the lines on the measuring cup.
Pour Part A of your resin kit up to the ½ fluid ounce mark on your measuring cup.
Pour Part B of your resin kit into the same cup until it is filled to the 1 fluid ounce mark. It is important to pour Part A first and then Part B. It is some chemical thing about the part A being heavier or something.
Set your timer for 2 minutes. Using the stir stick from your kit (a popsicle stick or coffee stir stick will work great too), slowly and carefully stir your resin scraping the sides as you stir. Stir for a minimum of 2 minutes. If your resin is still cloudy continue to mix until clear.
After mixing is complete and your resin is clear, scrape both sides of your stir stick on the edge of your resin filled cup.
To colorize the resin, pour the clear mixed resin into a separate mixing cup up to the 1 tsp. mark line.
Squeeze a little of the Castin’ Crafts Opaque Pigments onto a plastic bag. To prevent your Castin’ Crafts Opaque Pigments from being contaminated with mixed resin, you will want to use a fresh toothpick with each “toothpick tip” worth. I cut my toothpicks in half so I can easily use both ends.
We’ve made the creative process easier with color formulas for mixing Nunn Design Resin with Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigments.
- You may benefit from a color formula cheat sheet here: 20 Formulas for Colorizing Nunn Design Resin.
- To learn even more, you could watch this video on How to Colorize Nunn Design Resin with Pigments.
- TIP: The Castin’ Craft Opaque Pigments are very potent. When adding Castin’ Crafts Opaque Pigments to Nunn Design Resin, the pigment color amount cannot be greater than 10% of the resin. If it is, it will affect the resin’s ability to cure properly.
For this tutorial, I used the following color formula
Pantone 13-1404 TPX
- 1 tsp Nunn Design Resin
- 1 tiny toothpick tip Red
- 8 toothpicks tips White
- 5 toothpicks tips Brown
Let’s define what a “tiny toothpick tip” and a “toothpick tip” amount of colorant should look like. This is not an exact science. If you don’t get the exact amount, your color will still come out fairly close.
A “tiny toothpick tip” should look like the red one in this image. A “toothpick tip” should look like the white.
Add the required amount of Casin’ Crafts Opaque Pigment to the mixed resin.
Drizzle colorized resin onto the Earring Post Bar Large and Small slowly with a toothpick. Since they are so small and thin in size, it is really easy to overflow, so go slowly.
To create the splash of color, scoop up a wee bit of Jacquard Pearl Ex Powdered Pigments onto a toothpick. Place the toothpick over the wet, colorized resin, and gently tap the top of the toothpick. Drops of mica powder will land into the resin. Keep tapping until you have a desired look and effect.
Let the resin cure for 12 hours. You will need to “babysit” your curing resin.
TIP: Use your hot breath to “huff” on bubbles forming in the resin. Your hot breath will make the bubbles expand and pop.
If you had any over pour of resin that is stuck to the sides of the tag, use a pair of needle nose pliers to gentle remove the resin. When the resin is 12 hours into the curing process it is still not fully cured, but this soft cure state makes it really easy to remove the excess resin from the earrings.
Let pieces cure for the full curing cycle of up to 72 hours.
Add on butterfly clutches.
Please visit our Where to Buy Page for a listing of online stores that sell Nunn Design Findings Retail.
Nunn Design primarily sells wholesale, but we do offer some Retail Kits and Retail Buy & Try Programs for certain projects.
Shop Supplies WHOLESALE:
- Nunn Design Post Bar Earrings
- Castin’ Crafts Opaque Pigments
- Nunn Design Resin Kit (reskit)
- Jacquard Pearl Ex Powdered Pigments (jpps1-b)
Here is the same technique, but in the Bitsy Earrings. You can shop the supplies for this look here!
Shop Nunn Design Wholesale
Nunn Design has been supplying jewelry artists with findings for over 20 years. Shop wholesale jewelry findings for creative jewelry makers.Shop Nunn Design!
How to Purchase Wholesale?
If you are interested in becoming one of the many designers who trust their jewelry to Nunn Design Findings, please join us by registering to become one of our wholesale customers!
Please visit our Where to Buy Page for a listing of online stores that sell Nunn Design Findings retail.
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